Walter Buehr, who brought to life the colorful era of the feudal castle in Knights and Castles and Feudal Life, and the majesty of the Crusades in The Crusaders, turns to the same exciting era for another informative book.
Beginning with the story of feudalism and tracing its history through the early fourteenth century and its eventual decline, Mr. Buehr discusses the role knighthood played in feudalism, and the duties of the knight. He relates stories of the origin and history of some of the famous orders, such as the Knights of St. John (Hospitalers), the Knights Templars, the Order of the Garter, and the Knights of the Bath. The making of a knight, including his apprenticeship, his duties and his expected behavior, is also described. We follow the ever-changing art of war from early days to the time of the knight. The history and development of armor beginning with leather and padded cloth jackets, on to chain and scale mail, to the hauberk, and the addition of plate armor are described in detail, as are the helmets, shields and knight’s weapons. The advent of the firearm is still another topic in this lively and interesting book. This is a vivid narrative of the Age of Chivalry, fully illustrated with authentic drawings of this romantic period in history.
Walter Buehr has long been a favorite author-illustrator of young people who enjoy the color and romance of history. In addition to scholarly research for his books, Mr. Buehr often travels to the places he plans to write about. Before he began working on The Crusaders, he went to Europe for a firsthand look at the remains of medieval times. He studied and made sketches of armor, weapons and ornaments once used by feudal knights, and visited the places which would provide color and excitement for The Crusaders and subsequent books, including his popular Knights and Castles and Feudal Life and now, Chivalry and the Mailed Knight.
Mr. Buehr is a sailing man who has never lived far from the sea, and for many years lived his summers on the sea. He and his wife, Camilla, a fashion illustrator, live in Noroton, Connecticut. A short distance from their home you will find, of course, a moored sailboat.